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DJ Spooky: Celestial Mechanix

Mark Corroto By

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We arrive at the mix, the remix, and the original sound recordings from the same place. Your ears, you see (you hear), cannot differentiate between the original and what has been reconstituted. But your psyche can.

DJ Spooky knows this and he is a master of playing with your subconscious mind. He deals in fragments, found sounds, and memory. That is why when you hear Captain Kirk from Star Trek and Commander George W. Bush mixed (er, remixed) in his creation you feel the connections being made. And then again you might miss the part he has taken from a Matthew Shipp solo or a William Parker bass line. But it is all in his mix.

DJ Spooky, aka Paul D. Miller, made Optometry for Thirsty Ear in 2002, mixing samples seamlessly with live musicians. It was a watershed recording, a fusion of jazz and DJ culture. He then remixed this project on Dubtometry. You see, the varying machinations of this concept are endless. Original music is in the eye of the beholder. When you clear your samples, or have the entire Thirsty Ear Blue Series catalog at your disposal, the ground is quite fertile for such projects.

Miller employs Antipop Consortium, Saul Williams, Meat Beat Manifesto, Carl Hancock Rux, El-P, J-Live, among others to repackage, sometimes with a blender, the catalog of incredible music. Disc one is a collection of eleven remixes, while the second disc is a continuous party mix that ebbs and flows for nearly eighty minutes.

If the medium is the massage, this medium (the remix) makes that massage even better.


Track Listing: Stellar [Remix]; CD: Dir>Gesture>; Travelogue, Pt. 1: NYC to Hawaii; Lingua Ex Machina [Remix]; Nommos Ascending [Remix]; Maldoror's Gambit [Remix]; Not in Our Name; Bass Pressure [Mix]; Anansi's Gambit [Remix]; Otikon [Remix]; Shining Through; Unforgettable Journey; Lingua Ex Machina [Remix]; Travelogue, Pt. 1: NYC to Hawaii; SVP/(Interlude); Nu Bop/Scrapbook; Nu Bop; Not in Our Name [Remix]; Travelogue, Pt. 2: Medley; Nommos Ascending [Remix]; Bass Pressure Mix; Ananda Rotation; Real Is Surreal; Optometrix; Alter Echo's Interlude/Mad Professor's...; Out of the Blue; Jungle Soldier; Anandi's Gambit [Remix]; Slow Horn; SVP; Scrapbook; Visions; Urban Shadows; Dementia Absentia [Remix]; Nebula Interlude; CD: Dir>Gesture>; More and More; Maldoror's Gambit [Remix]; Song of Hope; Mist; I Spy; Double Cross; The Golden Age; Cosmic World.

Title: Celestial Mechanix | Year Released: 2004 | Record Label: Thirsty Ear Recordings

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CD/LP/Track Review
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